Charles McLellan

Hello, I'm the Reviews Editor at ZDNet UK. My experience with computers started at London's Imperial College, where I studied Zoology and then Environmental Technology. This was sufficiently long ago (mid-1970s) that Fortran, IBM punched-card machines and mainframes were involved, followed by green-screen terminals and eventually the personal computers we know and (mostly) love. After doing post-grad research at Imperial for a while, I got involved in helping to produce a weekly news magazine based in Amsterdam. This was in the mid-1980s, and one of my duties was to set up data communications links with technologically-challenged national newspaper journalists in a number of European cities via a 300-baud modem and an acoustic coupler. Tech support people have my sympathy! I've been in computer publishing since the late 1980s, starting with Reed Business Publishing's Practical Computing, then joining Ziff Davis in 1991 to help launch PC Magazine UK as Production Editor. After a couple of years I switched to commissioning, editing and writing, becoming a Technical Editor and then First Looks Editor. When ZDNet came looking for a Reviews Editor in 2000, I was ready to make the move from print to online — just in time for the dot-com crash! It's been a long road from punched cards to the cloud, but it'll still be fun seeing where we go from here.

Latest Posts

Lenovo IdeaPad Z575

Lenovo IdeaPad Z575

At this time of year, many parents are shopping around for laptops for their offspring, as they prepare for university in the autumn. Such a machine needs to have a decent-sized screen and a good keyboard, but remain reasonably portable.

published June 25, 2012 by

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Drobo 5D, Mini: SSD, Thunderbolt and USB 3.0

Drobo 5D, Mini: SSD, Thunderbolt and USB 3.0

Storage array maker Drobo has announced two new direct-attached devices, the Drobo 5D and Drobo Mini, which are aimed primarily at creative professionals (such as photo and video editors) but also home users and small businesses. The 5D is a 5-bay successor to last year's Drobo S, while the Mini is a brand-new portable 4-bay array designed for creative pros who need access to large amounts of local storage in the field.

published June 21, 2012 by

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The Curious Case of Soddy's Box

The Curious Case of Soddy's Box

Health and safety is important, of course — it's tricky enough to remain fit and healthy without the added risk of driving without a seat belt, or inhaling your colleagues' cigarette smoke at work all day. However, it can be said to have "gone mad", or at least a little screwy, when a significant piece of the country's scientific heritage comes under threat of destruction.

published June 14, 2012 by

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Ordissimo Laptop 15"

Ordissimo Laptop 15"

There has been a fair amount of recent 'buzz' around a pair of Ordissimo notebooks from a French company called Substantiel SAS. In fact, Linux-based Ordissimo computers — whose key selling point is ease of use — have been available in Europe since 2005, but the current generation of 15in.

published May 30, 2012 by

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Lenovo talks ThinkPads and servers

Lenovo talks ThinkPads and servers

Lenovo is now the number-two PC vendor worldwide and has just posted record results for the 2011/12 financial year ending 31 March. Little wonder, then, that Dilip Bhatia, vice president and general manager of the company's ThinkPad Business Unit, was in bullish mood when I met him this morning in London (not even a two-hour cab ride from Heathrow managed to dent his enthusiasm).

published May 24, 2012 by

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VideoMeet: cloud-based video communication

VideoMeet: cloud-based video communication

"Video is the next voice", according to Deutsche Telecom, which has recently introduced a cloud-based 'video communication' service called VideoMeet — hence the interest in promoting how easy to use and cost-effective videoconferencing (or rather, communication) is becoming. VideoMeet is a repackaged version of a service introduced last year by California-based startup Blue Jeans Network (BJN), with a few added extras.

published May 17, 2012 by

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Logitech BCC950 ConferenceCam

Logitech BCC950 ConferenceCam

Logitech is best known for its high-quality consumer-grade peripherals, but recently formed a business group, Logitech for Business, to market the more business-oriented products in its portfolio to SMEs and larger enterprises. There will also be new products under the 'for business' banner, among the first of which, announced today, is the BCC950 ConferenceCam.

published March 26, 2012 by

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GeChic On-Lap 1301

GeChic On-Lap 1301

"Two screens good, one screen bad", as Eric Blair might have written: but how do you get two screens on a notebook? Normally you'd have to attach a desktop monitor, which obviously limits your flexibility, or shell out serious money on a specialist system like the recently released dual-17in.

published December 6, 2011 by

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Xirrus extends Wi-Fi array portfolio

Xirrus extends Wi-Fi array portfolio

These days, Wi-Fi connectivity — preferably free — is expected as a matter of course in a wide variety of environments. However, the traditional approach to widespread Wi-Fi coverage, employing multiple access points (APs) and WLAN controllers, requires an equally large number of cable runs and Ethernet ports — all of which adds to the cost and complexity of an installation.

published November 18, 2011 by

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